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A "feminist perspective" in fisheries builds on the fact that women of fishing communities take on multidimensional roles that straddle both production and reproduction...


Technological changes in fisheries, entry of outside capital and growth in trade and markets have transformed the fisheries sector. These developments have increased pressure on fisheries resources, and in many instances, led to overfishing and resource collapse. In the process, traditional, sustainable fishing gears and practices have been replaced by those that are ‘efficient’ and capital-intensive, threatening livelihoods and the food security of small-scale fishing communities. Processes of economic globalization, privatization and the concentration of ownership and control of fisheries have affected, often in very negative ways, the lives of women fishworkers and their families. Women from small-scale fishing communities, engaged for example in marketing and processing fish, find it difficult to compete with economically powerful actors engaged in fish trade. Only in a very few instances have women fishworkers been able to leverage technological changes to overcome barriers created by patriarchy and gender discrimination to successfully compete in these markets. In several parts of the world women have turned to wage labour, employed as workers in fish processing plants, or in the unorganized sector catering to global markets engaged to process, clean, sort, unload or bait fish. Women are often preferred to men as the work is labour-intensive, and requires skill and precision. This work, however, tends to be short-term, poorly paid, and with little job security. Women put in long working hours, undertaking menial and repetitive tasks, under poor and exploitative working conditions, with implications for their health and well-being. Men, on the other hand, tend to be employed in higher paying jobs involving procurement, quality control, engineering and supervision. In the context of deepening resource crisis and the associated threat to livelihoods of local fishing communities, the growing incidence of HIV/ AIDS in these communities is a disturbing trend. The incidence of HIV/AIDs is linked to several factors: insecurity of livelihoods, poor educational opportunities for children, increase in crime and sex work, cultural practices of polygamy and the inability of women to deny their husbands sexual rights. For instance, in Fiji, the HIV/AIDS epidemic has been linked to the tuna transhipment industry, that puts certain kinds of people under threat: the fishermen on commercial vessels who engage in sex at ports, and the sex workers who service them. The documents under this theme provide insights on the above issues.
Barbara Neis, Marian Binkley, Siri Gerrard and Maria Cristina Maneschy. (Eds.). (2005). Changing Tides: Gender, Fisheries and Globalization
  • :Women in Fisheries,Fisheries Management,Globalization,Women and Resources Management
  • :World

le Sann A. 2005. Hopes amidst the nightmare. Yemaya, Issue 20, December 2005.
  • :Globalization

Medard M. 2003. What next? Yemaya, Issue 12, April 2003.
  • :Globalization,Status of Women

Lewis D. 2001. And so we Meet Again. Yemaya, Issue 7, August 2001.
  • :Globalization,Status of Women

2004. A Feminist Perspective. Statement adopted at the Asian Regional Consultation on Women in Fisheries, Medan, Indonesia, 11 -14 August 2004. Yemaya, Issue 17, December 2004.
  • :Globalization

Ismail S. 2003. “Pay for it”. Yemaya, Issue 14, December 2003.
  • :Globalization

Sharma C. 2002. Coming together. Yemaya, Issue 9, April 2002.
  • :Globalization

Shah M A. 2002. A bleak future. Yemaya, Issue 9, April 2002.
  • :Globalization,Status of Women

Nayak N. 2001. Public Hearing. Yemaya, Issue 8, December 2001.
  • :Globalization,Role of Women

Penton C, Cobb-Penton C and McCay B. 2000. Women are human too. Yemaya, Special Issue, August 2000.
  • :Globalization,Status of Women

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